Wednesday, December 28, 2011

New Puppy

Thank you for choosing Pekin Veterinary Clinic to care for your new pet.  In order to ensure that your puppy grows up to be a healthy adult, it is important to provide the best “preventative medicine” possible.  Below is a list of all the procedures and vaccinations we recommend for your new puppy.  We will be happy to remind you when the annual exam and vaccinations are due.

DHPP VACCINATION:  A combination vaccine to protect against four very contagious viral infections, including parvo virus.  Boosters are given every 3-4 weeks until your puppy is 16 weeks.  After the puppy series, your dog will require a booster at 1 year, then every 3 years thereafter.

LEPTOSPIROSIS VACCINATION:  A series of two vaccines to help protect against a potentially fatal bacterial infection that can also affect humans.  After the puppy series, your dog will require an annual booster.  This bacterium thrives in moist areas and is spread by the urine of carrier animals, including most wild and domestic mammals.

BORDETELLA VACCINATION:  A vaccine (or series of 2 for injectable) to help protect your puppy from kennel cough.  This vaccine is recommended for any puppy that will be interacting with other dogs, such as at groomers, puppy classes, kennels or dog parks.  Your dog will then require an annual booster.

RABIES VACCINATION:  This vaccine is required by law and is given after 12 weeks of age, followed by a 1 year booster then every 3 years thereafter.

LYME VACCINATION:  A series of 2 vaccinations in addition to vigilant tick prevention to help prevent Lyme disease.  This vaccine is recommended for dogs with tick exposure.

VACCINE REACTIONS:  If you notice a reaction such as hives, vomiting and/or swelling of the face shortly after your puppy received a vaccine, please contact us immediately.

FECAL EXAM:  Intestinal parasites are very common in new puppies and are not only harmful to your pet, but some are contagious to people.  Therefore, we recommend at least 2 fecal exams to identify any internal parasites your new puppy may have.

DEWORMING TREATMENTS:   Your puppy will receive a broad spectrum of deworming medication every 2 weeks for a total of 4 treatments.  Based on the results of your puppy’s fecal exam, you may need to treat with additional medications.

FLEA AND TICK PREVENTION:  Fleas and ticks are not only a nuisance to you and your pet; they can also carry diseases and cause skin allergies.  We recommend using monthly, year round preventive medication and annual testing for tick borne diseases.  We can help you decide which medication will work best for your pet.

HEARTWORM PREVENTION:  Heartworm disease is an easily preventable disease, using a monthly, year round preventive medication.  Heartworm disease is endemic in our area and is carried by mosquitoes.  We require an annual blood test which also screens for tick borne diseases.

MICROCHIPPING:  A microchip is a permanent form of identification for your pet.  If your pet gets lost or injured, the microchip number will allow animal control, shelters, veterinarians and good Samaritans to locate and reunite you with your pet.

SPAY/NEUTER:  There are multiple medical and behavioral advantages to spaying or neutering your pet.  Recommended age is 5-7 months.  Pre-surgical blood work is recommended prior to this surgery to serve as a baseline as well as being safe for anesthesia.  Discounts are given to those pets that are spayed/neutered prior to 8 months of age.

DIET:  Your puppy is growing rapidly and needs a high quality puppy growth formula.  At six months, you should switch your puppy over to adult dog food.  It is important not to overfeed in order to maintain a lean body condition during growth.  This will encourage optimal joint and bone health especially in large breeds.

DENTAL HEALTH:  Now is a great time to get your puppy accustomed to the tooth brush.  We recommend daily brushing for your pet.  Please ask us for a demo on how to brush your puppy’s teeth!

The teen years can run from 1-2 years old.  We recommend vaccinations based on your dog’s specific risk factors and lifestyle.  Annual exams also include a wormer/fecal, heartworm/lyme blood test, body weight and a physical exam. The main vaccinations are DHPP, lepto, bordetella, and rabies vaccination. Ideally a complete blood count and organ screening blood test would be done for baseline values for future reference.

The adult years can run approximately 3-7 years.  These years end when the dog starts experiencing some aging issues.  Vaccination is done according to the risk factors/lifestyle of your dog.  Annual exams include a fecal, heartworm/lyme blood test, body weight and a physical exam including a thorough dental exam.

In the senior years, a fecal and annual physical exam including a thorough dental exam should be done. In most giant breeds a General Senior Profile (blood work) is considered at 4 plus years of age. In most large breeds of dogs, the start time for this blood work is around 6 years. The smaller dogs may begin their adult samples after age 7 or 8.  Senior work ups should include a complete blood count, chemistry evaluation (including kidneys, liver, pancreas, etc.) urinalysis, a thyroid test, fecal, body weight and heartworm/lyme test.  Vaccination is done according to the risk factors and lifestyle of your dog.

We look forward to getting to know you and your new pet.  If you have any questions or concerns about your pet, please feel free to contact us.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Seasons Greetings from Pekin Veterinary Clinic

Pets as Presents

It's hard to resist the joy of giving your favorite loved one the pet they've always wanted for Christmas. However, the result of many of these well intentioned gifts is animals that are unwanted, uncared for and oftentimes sent to shelters. 

An animal of any kind (even one as small as a fish or a hamster) is not a light, last minute purchase. Bringing a new life into the house should be well thought out and discussed with the entire family. 

Holiday pets often get ignored in the holiday rush. Christmas morning is filled with so many presents, lots of food, family and relatives coming over...then there's New Years in a few days. You think it's stressful on you? Thank about what a pet who's never been in your house before would be thinking. A new pet needs lots of quiet and calm. A new puppy or kitten needs to watched constantly and settle into a routine so they can become a happy member of the family. This is impossible to accomplish on Christmas. The new pet will just end up confused and scared. 

You should never pick an actual pet for another person, even a child. Bring the child along to pick out the animal and let it be a family event. All animals (even hamsters and fish) have distinct personalities and letting your entire family help with the choice makes the animal more special to them. Besides, don't you want to see how the puppy interacts with your entire family? That great puppy you pick out for your son might not like kids. Your son might decide the puppy you like plays too rough. Your kids may decide they'd rather have a cat! 

New Puppies

Almost every child asks Santa for one, however a dog is MAJOR purchase and a new puppy needs lots of attention and care. With the hustle and bustle of the Christmas/New Year holiday, the puppy probably won't get the attention it needs. That's not even taking into account all the ribbon, trees, rich Christmas foods, chocolate and other dangers the puppy could unintentionally get in while your family is busy with their other gifts. 

Alternate ideas: Give the kids a stuffed puppy and tell them the new puppy is coming. Wrap a puppy bowl, collar, crate and other puppy supplies with a "certificate" to get a puppy at a later date. All of this stuff should be set up and ready for the puppy when it comes home anyway. This way, you and your family can set it up while you tell them about the responsibility of a new dog. Another great idea is a few books on puppy care (especially if you have an older child).

New Kittens

Kittens don't take quite as much attention as puppies but they can still get into a lot of trouble at Christmas. Kittens are notorious for swallowing tinsel and ribbon and getting lots of stomach problems. Small kittens scare easily and the safest retreat will probably be up the tree which can be dangerous. 

Alternate ideas: Cat care kits, litter boxes, cat toys, books on kitten care. The litter box and a bed for kitty should be in place before he gets to his new house. You and the kids can decide where to put it.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday Pet Safety Tips

Holly, Jolly and Oh-So-Safe! Of course you want to include your furry companions in the festivities, pet parents, but as you celebrate this holiday season, try to keep your pet's eating and exercise habits as close to their normal routine as possible. And be sure to steer them clear of the following unhealthy treats, toxic plants and dangerous decorations:
O Christmas Tree Securely anchor your Christmas tree so it doesn't tip and fall, causing possible injury to your pet. This will also prevent the tree water—which may contain fertilizers that can cause stomach upset—from spilling. Stagnant tree water is a breeding ground for bacteria and your pet could end up with nausea or diarrhea should he imbibe.
Tinsel-less Town
Kitties love this sparkly, light-catching "toy" that's easy to bat around and carry in their mouths. But a nibble can lead to a swallow, which can lead to an obstructed digestive tract, severe vomiting, dehydration and possible surgery. It's best to brighten your boughs with something other than tinsel.
No Feasting for the Furries
By now you know not to feed your pets chocolate and anything sweetened with xylitol, but do you know the lengths to which an enterprising fur kid will go to chomp on something yummy? Make sure to keep your pets away from the table and unattended plates of food, and be sure to secure the lids on garbage cans.
Toy Joy
Looking to stuff your pet's stockings? Choose gifts that are safe.

  • Dogs have been known to tear their toys apart and swallowing the pieces, which can then become lodged in the esophagus, stomach or intestines. Stick with chew toys that are basically indestructible, Kongs that can be stuffed with healthy foods or chew treats that are designed to be safely digestible.
  • Long, stringy things are a feline's dream, but the most risky toys for cats involve ribbon, yarn and loose little parts that can get stuck in the intestines, often necessitating surgery. Surprise kitty with a new ball that's too big to swallow, a stuffed catnip toy or the interactive cat dancer—and tons of play sessions together.
Forget the Mistletoe & Holly
Holly, when ingested, can cause pets to suffer nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset and cardiovascular problems. And many varieties of lilies, can cause kidney failure in cats if ingested. Opt for just-as-jolly artificial plants made from silk or plastic, or choose a pet-safe bouquet.
Leave the Leftovers
Fatty, spicy and no-no human foods, as well as bones, should not be fed to your furry friends. Pets can join the festivities in other fun ways that won't lead to costly medical bills.
That Holiday Glow
Don't leave lighted candles unattended. Pets may burn themselves or cause a fire if they knock candles over. Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface. And if you leave the room, put the candle out!
Wired Up
Keep wires, batteries and glass or plastic ornaments out of paws' reach. A wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock and a punctured battery can cause burns to the mouth and esophagus, while shards of breakable ornaments can damage your pet's mouth.
House Rules
If your animal-loving guests would like to give your pets a little extra attention and exercise while you're busy tending to the party, ask them to feel free to start a nice play or petting session.
Put the Meds Away
Make sure all of your medications are locked behind secure doors, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.
Careful with Cocktails
If your celebration includes adult holiday beverages, be sure to place your unattended alcoholic drinks where pets cannot get to them. If ingested, your pet could become weak, ill and may even go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
A Room of Their Own
Give your pet his own quiet space to retreat to—complete with fresh water and a place to snuggle. Shy pups and cats might want to hide out under a piece of furniture, in their carrying case or in a separate room away from the hubbub.
New Year's Noise
As you count down to the new year, please keep in mind that strings of thrown confetti can get lodged in a cat's intestines, if ingested, perhaps necessitating surgery. Noisy poppers can terrify pets and cause possible damage to sensitive ears.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Holiday Pet Gifts

Are you looking for a gift for your canine friend that is sure to get the tails wagging and paws pouncing this holiday season? For the safety conscious pet, you could always get them a new travel carrier or car seat harness. Or for the sophisticated pet, try some baked doggie goods from your local doggie bakery. If purchasing special goodies from bakeries isn’t your thing, make your own doggie treats! For the owner on a budget or for the pet who has everything, the gift of time is the top gift for any pet this year.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

December Employee of the Month

Amber is our December Employee of the Month. She is a Veterinary Assistant and has recently graduated from the Vet Tech Institute at Hickey College in St. Louis, MO. She is one of the newest members of the Pekin Veterinary Clinic team. She loves her job and every aspect of it. She also enjoys small animals, including exotics. She is especially interested most in performing dentals, physical therapy and assisting in surgery. She also has two Associate Degrees in Equestrian Science and Horse Science Technology.

In her spare time, she enjoys training and showing horses as well as giving horse back riding lessons. She enjoys both english and western styles of riding. She owns an Australian cattle dog, Cory, who she teaches how to herd horses who she has adopted during tech school.

Over the years, she has had many pets including reptiles, hamsters, fish, horses, dogs and cats, to name a few. She currently has two Great Danes named Riley and Windslow in addition to Cory. She has six horses. She has three quarter horses, Bailey, Gunner, and Remington. She also has a Missouri Fox Trotter, Five-gaited Saddlebred, and an Arabian Stallion. Animals have always been a huge part of her life. They are a good judge of character and are always there for you when you need a friend the most. Becoming a technician has made her more able to return the favor to them in a variety of ways.

In any additional spare time she has, she likes to work out, read and socialize with friends, play the violin, play volleyball, and watch football. We are very honored to have Amber has a part of the Pekin Veterinary Clinic team!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Gift Certificates from Pekin Veterinary Clinic Make Great Holiday Gifts!

Looking for a great gift for the pet lover in your life? Try a gift certificate for Pekin Veterinary Clinic or for Aboard the Ark pet boarding or grooming services. There's no better gift then to pamper the companions that have shed so much joy in our lives throughout the year. Click the link or call us at 309-346-1375 for more information! 
Click here for information about Aboard the Ark!

National Mutt Day!

Today is National Mutt Day! National Mutt Day is all about embracing, saving and celebrating mixed breed dogs. There are millions of loving and healthy mixed breed dogs sitting in shelters, which are desperately searching for a new home. Consider a mixed breed pet for your next furry family member! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Blair Born- Pet Highlight

Blair Born is a very sweet geriatric black Labrador Retriever that was referred to the Pekin Veterinary Clinic in February of 2011 for physical therapy.  We were able to get Blair up and moving better with the physical therapy laser treatments and acupuncture. Radiographs on Blair’s right front leg were taken in May and confirmed that Blair had Osteosarcoma, or bone cancer in her leg.  The University of Illinois amputated her leg in June and in August we started administering chemo therapy.  Blair has continued to have a great attitude and an awesome outlook on life.  She still takes her medicines like a good girl and can get around very well on just three legs.  She is a success story in every way and we are proud to have contributed to her success.

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Did you know?
-Cancer accounts for nearly 50% of all disease-related pet deaths each year
-One in four dogs die of cancer.
-Approximately 1 in 4 dogs develops a tumor of some kind during his lifetime.
-Just like in humans, cancer can occur in any part of your dog’s body.

Are you aware that November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month? Run your hands over your pet and feel for any unusual lumps or bumps. If you feel something new or unusual, let's take a look at it. Dogs and cats can get benign lumps such as lipomas and sebaceous cysts, but they can also get much more serious tumors, like mast cell tumors, melanomas, squamous cell carcinomas, and many others. Many of these can be diagnosed with a simple in-office procedure involving a needle aspirate and then a microscopic exam of the cells obtained. A fine needle aspirate is generally less painful than a vaccination, so don't hesitate to get that lump checked out. The importance of annual check-ups regardless of the age of your pet is critical in the prevention of cancer. 

Here are the top 10 early warning signs of pet cancer listed out by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

1. Abnormal swellings that persist or continue to grow
2. Sores that do not heal
3. Weight loss
4. Loss of appetite
5. Bleeding or discharge from any body opening
6. Offensive odor
7. Difficulty eating or swallowing
8. Hesitation to exercise or loss of stamina
9. Persistent lameness or stiffness
10. Difficulty breathing, urinating or defecating

Better to be safe than sorry, and much better to catch something sooner rather than later!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Blair Born-Pet Highlight

Blair Born is a very sweet geriatric black Labrador Retriever that was referred to the Pekin Veterinary Clinic in February of 2011 for physical therapy.  We were able to get Blair up and moving better with the physical therapy laser treatments and acupuncture. Radiographs on Blair’s right front leg were taken in May and confirmed that Blair had Osteosarcoma, or bone cancer in her leg.  The University of Illinois amputated her leg in June and in August we started administering chemo therapy.  Blair has continued to have a great attitude and an awesome outlook on life.  She still takes her medicines like a good girl and can get around very well on just three legs.  She is a success story in every way and we are proud to have contributed to her success.

Monday, November 7, 2011

November Employee of the Month

Danna is our November Employee of the Month! Danna is a Certified Veterinary Technician We are very proud to have her as a part of the team!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Boarding Reminder

Spending the holidays away from home this year…and can't take your pet with you? Pekin Veterinary Clinic offers boarding accommodations for your canine and feline friends. Aboard the Ark is a full service facility designed to accommodate all your pet care needs. Your pet will enjoy their stay in their home away from home. We are so happy to provide this incredible service to the community and it's pets. Call us at 309-346-1375 to schedule your pets boarding reservation.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

November is National Senior Pet Month

November is Senior Pet Month. Do you have an older cat or dog sharing your home? If so, you know the joys of pets who might have less spunk but more soul. Here are five reasons to love a senior pet.

1. Distinguished look
You know how as we age, we are said to look distinguished? The same is true for our pets. I think senior cats project an air of peaceful dignity. And who can resist the precious gray muzzle of an older dog?
2. Laid-back lifestyle
For kittens and puppies, most any time is play time. Older pets, however, don’t need to release all that youthful energy. They are quieter and often content to just watch what’s going on in the living room or outside the window. Cuddling next to you takes precedence over most anything else.
3. Fewer demands
Older pets still need love and attention, but they don’t require babysitting like a frisky puppy or curious kitten. Some older pets have special medical needs, but after all they’ve given us through the years, it’s an honor to take care of them in return.
4. Wisdom of the ages
When I look into the eyes of a senior dog, I see a world of experience and wisdom. Older pets know what to expect, and are generally reliable and even. They require little training since they already know the rules.
5. They might be just like you!
As we get older, our needs and routines change. We might prefer quiet evenings at home rather than going out on the weekends. We still like to exercise, walk, or even run—but sometimes we go at a different pace. We might even nap in our chair occasionally. If you have a senior dog, you might find that he’s just like you!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


FOUND DOG! This cuddly canine is at least one year old, 20 pounds, cream and silver and found with a blue collar. He was found near 5113 North Executive Drive in Peoria. PLEASE call 309-339-5670 if you know who this pet belongs to.


4 years old, Grey/White Medium Longhair, 15 lbs, neutered, All claws, microchipped, no collar, last seen on Saturday morning 9/24. Best described as cute & dumb. Very affectionate and docile (lazy). Nasally rasp when he breathes, kind of snorts when you pet him, snores when he sleeps. Contrary to his name, he’s a big cat, long, soft, bushy fur and tail. Tail curls upward.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Check me out, doc!

Wackiest Pet Names of 2011

Ozzy Pawsbourne and Almost-A-Dog top this year's list of quirkiest monikers.
Fido, Spot or Fluffy? For some peculiar pet owners, these names are just too traditional. Although "Bella" and "Max" currently lead the pack as the nation's most popular pet names, thousands of other four-legged friends have much more distinctive names.

So drumroll, please... the 10 Most Unusual Dog and Cat Names for 2011:
  1. Almost-A-Dog
  2. Franco Furter
  3. Stinkie Mcstinkerson
  4. Sir Seamus McPoop
  5. Audrey Shepburn
  6. Dewey Decimell
  7. Knuckles Capone
  8. Beagle Lugosi
  9. Shooter Mclovin
  10. Uzi Duzi-Du
  1. Ozzy Pawsbourne
  2. Mr. Meowgi
  3. Murderface
  4. Fuglee
  5. Scruffernutter
  6. Corporal Cuddles
  7. Cat Masterson
  8. Spam
  9. Tape W. Orm
  10. Louisiana Purchase

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Puppy Kindergarten Class

Get your puppy registered for our next Puppy Kindergarten class, which starts on Thursday September 29th. We have had amazing turnouts at our previous classes. Teaching your puppy to socialize with other animals will help them establish confidence and create a solid relationship for their future visits to our office or the dog park. Call us at 309-346-1375 to register your puppy today!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Happy Cat Month

The CATalyst Council has declared September as Happy Cat Month. This month is dedicated to finding ways to keep our feline friends happy, healthy and purring all year long. Click the link below for the top 10 ways to keep your feline friend happy.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Don’t run the risk of losing with your pet with no chance of reuniting. Even if your pet never wanders away, remember that in old age, pets have a tendency to lose their scent and can wander too far to retrace their steps. At Pekin Veterinary Clinic, we recommend a microchip for every cat and dog.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Today is National Assistance Dog Day!

Today is National Assistance Dog Day! Assistance Dogs transform the lives of their human partners with physical and mental disabilities by serving as their companion, helper, best friend and close member of their family. We would like recognize and honor the hardworking assistance dogs and honor the puppy raisers and trainers of assistance dogs as well as recognize the heroic deeds performed by assistance dogs in our community.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Pet of the Month

Fuzzy Putter is our Pet of the Month! Fuzzy is owned by Danny and Traci Buttrum. We are proud to honor Fuzzy this August!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

June Pet of the Month

This is Izzy Barra, owned by Kathy Barra. We are proud to announce that she is our Pet of the Month for June.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer is an exciting time for the entire family...but exploding fireworks, loud booming music and other noises, like thunderstorms, are terribly frightening to pets. We recommend keeping your pets inside in a room farthest away from the fireworks or noise. Never let pets near exploding fireworks which can burn and severely injure them. Our office can offer suggestions or medication to help ease your pet’s anxiety during the summer season.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pets & Heat

Now is a wonderful opportunity to have fun and frolic with your pets…but be careful. While exercise is important for pets, overexertion during hot weather can commonly cause heat stress. Make sure your pet has an ample supply of fresh drinking water at all times and a shady spot to retreat to for protection from the midday sun and heat. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pets and Trucks

Did you know that riding in the back of trucks is not safe for your pet and in some states it’s actually illegal?  While any dog would love the wind blowing through its fur, other things are blowing through that wind too.  This increases the risk for you dog to get hit with flying debris which might cause injury that you might not even be aware of.  Keep your pet in the cab of the truck, preferably in a crate that will not slide around with sudden stops.  

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

We would like to remind you to never leave your pet alone in a car during hot weather. Even if parked in the shade with a window open, temperatures can quickly soar to 120 degrees. This type of heat can result in heatstroke and severely harm your pet. Signs of heatstroke include panting heavily, staring, anxious expression, high fever, rapid heartbeat, vomiting, and collapse. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet.  Bring them inside where it is cool and be sure to provide access to plenty of fresh, clean water.  

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Spring is the perfect time to play with your pet outdoors…but before you grab that Frisbee and dog to go to the park, talk to us about annual examinations, vaccinations and heartworm preventatives. Schedule your pet for their annual vaccinations and yearly heartworm check so that you two can have a great spring season.

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Join us at Pekin Veterinary Clinic the first weekend in June for our Open House! Open House's increase awareness of what goes on behind the scenes at our practice and gives the staff an opportunity to show off their skills in a relaxed atmosphere. We would love to have you attend so you can see for yourself the exemplary veterinary services our team is proud to provide to the Tazewell County community.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Pets & Flowers

We would like to remind you that there are many toxic plants and flowers that begin to show up in the spring. Common poisonous flowers include lilies, azaleas, hydrangeas, hemlock, rhododendrons, gladiolus, oleander and hibiscus…all causing vomiting, diarrhea and sometimes death if ingested in large enough quantities. Remove all plants where pets roam unsupervised and, if decorating the inside of your home, please consider using pet-friendly silk flowers instead.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Avoiding Easter Hazards!

With the arrival of the holiday season our pets are often prone to new un thought of risks. Nothing makes a holiday more memorable than a panicked trip to the vets. But pet owners need not fret. Here's what you need to know to have an emergency-free celebration this Easter.

Festive Foods:
One of the biggest risks to pets at Easter time is "CHOCOLATE". The canine nose is an expert in sniffing out all the lovely sweet goodies in an instant. And birds, cats & dogs alike are drawn to the bright colors & shiny wrappers. Chocolate contains a compound called theobromine that can be toxic to dogs, cats and parrots. Baker's chocolate has the highest concentration of theobromine. How a pet reacts to chocolate depends on its size, as well as the amount and type of chocolate eaten. Vomiting and diarrhea are common signs of chocolate toxicosis, and while rare, too much chocolate can even be fatal. Carob chocolate is a natural, delicious and pet friendly alternative.

Foil packaging, ribbon and pretty sparkly plastic wadding are irresistible to cats and birds, while a big shiny Easter egg appears as a fun ball for a dog.  Pets love to play with these items and they will sometimes swallow them. Known as linear foreign bodies in vet speak, they are indigestible and can cause a partial or complete obstruction. They are often sharp and run the risk of cutting through the wall of the intestinal tract which can cause peritonitis.

While we all love our pets and wish to include them in the festivities, it is important to remember that now matter how much they beg, what they want may not always be what is best for them. Rich fatty foods can cause an upset stomach, vomiting or even pancreatitis in the extreme. Onions either raw or cooked can be poisonous to cats and dogs. As little as one bite of an onion can cause some of the red bloods cells to be destroyed (haemolytic anaemia) symptoms can include pale gums, reddish urine and lethargy.

It is important to remember never to feed your pets cooked bones as they can splinter and cause internal damage. The same applies to feeding your pets fish which might contain bones. Bowls of nuts and raisin-laden fruitcakes or chocolate covered sultanas are also common holiday treats. Macadamia Nuts are toxic to dogs. Although one nut is not likely to harm your dog, a number of them could require a trip to the emergency ward. Dogs who ingest macadamia nuts could suffer weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia.

Foods that are healthy for us may not be so good for our beloved pets. Raisins and grapes are toxic to cats and dogs causing vomiting, diarrhea, kidney failure and even death. While avocadoes are harmful to dogs, cats, birds and Guinea pigs. They contain a toxic fatty acid called persin which can cause vomiting, gastrointestinal irritation, congestion, respiratory disease, fluid accumulation around the heart tissue and may cause death, especially in small animals and birds. So please be careful when serving fruit platters or salads this Easter.

One very real concern to pets are products containing the artificial sweetener Xylitol. This absolutely needs to be avoided. It will cause low blood sugar if ingested in toxic amounts and has been known to cause fatal liver failure.
During the festive season it is easy to forget the dangers of leaving alcoholic drinks within reach of our pets. It may seem harmless enough to offer your best mate a frosty cold one to celebrate alongside the humans. But alcohol poisoning is a very real danger to our pets. Problems equate to the amount of alcohol ingested compared to weight. Even a very small amount of alcohol can cause severe poisoning in a small pet. The yeast contained in beer can also lead to bloating and abdominal pain.

The good news is there is now a specially designed non alcoholic doggy beer on the market called *Paw Rex* It is made with beef stock so dogs love it and even comes in a six pack.

It is also important to remember that most cats and dogs are lactose intolerant so avoid giving them any dairy products. Specially designed lactose free animal products are an available alternative.  It's up to us to make sure hazards are kept out of reach and that visitors or children know the risks. Remember prevention is better than cure. For healthy Easter treat alternatives to spoil your best friend, please visit our Pet Gourmet section in this special Easter addition of Pet Scene Magazine.

Unexpected Hazards:
With all the coming and going and busy rush that comes with the holiday seasons it is easy for opportunities to arise to get our pets into trouble. It is not uncommon for visitors who are not used to pets to leave gates or doors open. This welcomes the opportunity for your pet to flee the house with all its strange new smells, noise and people. An open window makes for a great escape root for cats or free flying birds. Many pets wind up getting lost or struck by vehicles as a result of this careless mistake. If you have a pet that becomes nervous around new people or strange activity it may be a good idea to plan in advance to have area of the house or yard which is separate where they can feel safe and secure. Visitors who aren't used to living with pets may inadvertently leave their medications within reach. This brings opportunities for serious problems. Dogs are not deterred by childproof caps and can quickly find themselves in a world of trouble. Warn guests to keep medications well out of reach.

Traveling with pets:
If your going out of town with your pet this Easter there are a few things to remember:

* Make sure your pet is in a cool well ventilated position and never left alone in a closed car, temperatures can sore very quickly.

* Make sure your pet is secured in either a pet crate or safety harness.

* If your pet suffers from motion sickness it's recommended that you consult with your vet prior to travel to arrange an appropriate treatment.

* Make sure you plan for toileting and drink breaks. Our pets need to refresh too. 

* If you are planning to go out on the water these holidays be sure to pack your pet a life vest.

* If you are going on holiday this Easter with your pets, be sure you have a full supply of any medications they may be taking with you.

The humble Easter Lily
Many cat owners will be surprised to learn that lilies ( Liliaceae) are extremely toxic to their feline friends. The exact cause is unknown, however even the smallest amounts if ingested by cats can  be fatal, while dogs who ingest large amounts only develop signs of mild gastrointestinal upset. Early warning signs of Lily toxicity include vomiting, depression and a lack of appetite. There is no antidote, but with early detection and aggressive treatment the cat stands a better chance of survival. Cats may sometimes appear to be improving after the first onset of symptoms, but 24-72hrs later crash and become critically ill as they go into acute renal failure. If you suspect there is a chance your cat may have ingested this plant it is important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. If left untreated cats die within 3-7 days. Cat owners should never grow Lilies in the garden and should ensure that lilies are never part of floral arrangements. This is important to remember these holidays with the popular Easter Lily appearing  in most flower arrangements.

We hope that these tips will help you and your pets have a happy and safe
holiday season.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The weather is getting warmer and it is the time when we start to fire up our barbeque grills. We want to remind you that barbeque and picnic foods should not be fed to pets.  Please bring plenty of food and treats for your pets so that they can join in on the fun, food and sunshine. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

There are safety concerns that you should be aware of regarding your pets this spring season. One of the main concerns involves lawn and garden products. Fertilizers can be very harmful and even deadly to pets so be sure to keep these products out of reach. Follow the directions on the fertilizer bag to the T!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Easter Lilies can be a beautiful decoration in the spring season, but did you know that all parts of the lily plant are considered toxic and dangerous to your cat? If ingested, it can cause severe kidney damage and even death. Please be advised that cat owners should remove lilies out of reach of your cat and consider an alternative to the lily such as Easter Orchids and Easter Daisies. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Did you know that heartworm, fleas, ticks and other parasites could be prevented?  These pesky critters can wreck havoc on your pet's body.... and…make their lives miserable.  We recommend simple screenings and year round prevention for Heartworm Disease, which can often be fatal, to alleviate your pet from suffering.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Did you know that fleas can survive in the cold winter weather? We recommend keeping your pet on a year round flea and tick preventative as well as a year round heartworm preventative, to ensure that your pet remains happy and healthy throughout the entire year.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Is your pet starting to get a little grey around the muzzle? As your pet ages, it is important to maintain optimum health for their quality of life. Senior pets need more extensive risk assessment visitations. Teeth should be brushed daily, exercise routines are important and remember obesity is the number one health problem in older dogs. With routine blood and urine analysis and more frequent risk assessment exams, your pet will live a long and healthy life.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

As always, exercise is important even in the winter months! If there’s snow on the ground, check your pet’s paws for ice balls or injuries. Rinse feet off if your pet has walked where de-icers have been used. If your pet is having difficulty exercising due to depth of snow, slick icy surfaces, or appears to be winded, we recommend that you shorten the usual exercise times and monitor for any unusual signs. If you suspect that your pet has ingested any harmful toxins from de-icers or anti-freeze, please let us know immediately, so that we may advise you about what to do next.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Team Member of the Month

From the time I was old enough to talk, I knew that I wanted to be a veterinarian. The bond between humans and animals played an integral part in my development as a person. Growing up I always had pets (from cats to snakes to hamsters to fish). I now have 2 cats: Gracie, who I adopted during my senior year of vet school, and Millie, ...who was abandoned at my last job and came home to live with me. I was born and raised in northern New Jersey (a real Jersey Girl!). I graduated from William Paterson University of New Jersey with a Bachelor’s degree in biology. I attended Kansas State University School of Veterinary medicine and graduated in 2010 (go Cats!). My veterinary interests include cardiology, exotic animal medicine, and feline medicine and surgery. In my spare time I enjoy running, reading, playing video games, watching anything on the history channel, and watching and playing sports. I am a lifelong NY Giant and NY Yankee fan. I love football, baseball, and college basketball. I am excited to be joining the team at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. I look forward to living in Pekin and getting to know the people and the community and most importantly, meeting the Pekin pets and providing them with the best care possible.
-Dr. Huber (Pekin Veterinary Clinic's Team Member of the Month)
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) estimates more than 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats have oral disease by the time they are three years old. What are you doing to ensure your pet's dental needs are cared for?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pet of the Month

Pekin Veterinary Clinic is proud to honor Baitley Maddox as our Pet of the Month! Baitley is owned by Hazel Maddox.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Job Shadow Day!

 This photo is of Brittany Neill. Brittany did a Job Shadow Day on Saturday with Cindy at Aboard the Ark. Brittany is from Midwest Central High School.
Did you know that dental care is an extremely important component of your pets overall health? More than 80% of dogs and cats over the age of three suffer from dental disease. Dental disease can lead to secondary conditions affecting your pet’s heart, liver and kidneys. Infected teeth and gums are especially dangerous to your older pets. Pekin Veterinary Clinic provides comprehensive dental care including regular dental cleanings.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Do Your Pets Sleep in Your Bed?

Do your pets sleep in your bed? Dr. Michael Cavanuagh, AAHA Executive Director, talks about the recent report about risks associated with pets sleeping in your bed.

Water Treadmill

Stacey Berlett is doing water treadmill therapy with a pet.  Stacey received her certification in canine rehabilitation from the University of Tennessee in December of 2010.  She joins Dr. Jess as our second Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practictioner, providing therapeutic care for your pets.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Valentine's Day Tip

Mmmm…candy!  But not for Fluffy!  Chocolate, in all forms; is dangerous for both dogs and cats.  The plastic or foil wrappers are dangerous if ingested.  Make sure to keep pet treats at hand. When everyone else is enjoying the Valentine’s Day fun, let your pet in on the fun too!  This will lessen the temptation to try to steal human treats.  However, if you suspect that you pet has gotten into chocolate, or any other harmful substance; please call and we will guide you about what to do next. We care about your pet’s health.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Three New Loveable Breeds Join AKC Family

The American Kennel Club® (AKC®) expanded its litter of registered breeds on January 1, to welcome the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, the Norwegian Lundehund and the Xoloitzcuintli --growing AKC’s family to 170 breeds.
"The AKC is delighted to introduce these three distinct breeds to the public," said AKC Spokesperson Gina DiNardo. "Each loveable breed has a unique and diverse history and is a wonderful addition to the AKC."
The American Kennel Club® (AKC®) expanded its litter of registered breeds on January 1, to welcome the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, the Norwegian Lundehund and the Xoloitzcuintli --growing AKC’s family to 170 breeds.

The Entlebucher Mountain Dog was bred to move cows from pasture to pasture in the Swiss Alps. The breed is medium-sized and prized for its agreeable nature, trainability, and devotion. Entles are an active, high energy and physical breed with above average exercise requirements, so they are best suited for active families and not the casual dog owner. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the National Entlebucher Mountain Dog Association’s website at:

The Norwegian Lundehund is known for having six toes on each foot and the ability to tip its head backward until it touches its backbone. These unique characteristics enabled the Norwegian Lundehund to climb steep, rocky cliffs and navigate crevices where the Puffins, a bird they were bred to hunt, nested. Lundehunds make loyal and playful companions, but can be wary of strangers if not socialized. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the Norwegian Lundehund Association of America’s at:

The Xoloitzcuintli (pronounced show-low-etz-queent-lee) is one of the world’s rarest breeds and is still considered a "healer" in remote Mexican and Central American Villages today. The breed comes in three sizes: toy, miniature and standard; and two varieties: hairless and coated, which makes the Xolo ideal for those looking for a dog with more variety. They serve as an excellent companion for families due to their attentive and calm nature and require moderate exercise and grooming. Additional facts on this breed can be found on the Xoloitzcuintli Club of America’s website at:

In addition, the AKC also welcomed the following breeds into the Miscellaneous Class: Bergamasco, Boerboels, Portuguese Podengo Pequenos, Sloughis, Peruvian Inca Orchid, Pumi, Dogo Argentino and Wirehaired Vizsla.

For breeds to become AKC-registered, they must first be recorded with an accepted registry. The AKC Foundation Stock Service® (FSS®) is the AKC's recording service for purebred breeds that are not yet eligible for AKC registration. After a breed is entered into FSS the recognition process begins with a written request to compete in the Miscellaneous Class from a National Breed Club. While there is no established timetable for adding new breeds, dogs typically compete in the Miscellaneous Class for one to three years. More information on the process can be found at the AKC’s Web site.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


Older pets tend to have a tougher time when the weather changes. If you’ve noticed your senior pet struggling to go up and down stairs, or having trouble rising up after a nap, they may be having an arthritic flare-up. We can prescribe them anti-inflammatory medications to help them feel younger again during the colder weather.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Cats & Car Engines

If the weather starts to get chilly, make sure your pet has some place warm to stay. Look before you start your car, tap on the hood, or better yet, open it. Cats love warm places and they will often climb onto car engine compartments to get warm. Lacerations, burns and other injuries can occur for a cat when an engine starts. Always know where your pets are, especially if the weather starts to turn.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Featured Pet of the Month

Pekin Veterinary Clinic is proud to honor Annie Williams as our Featured Pet of the Month in January! She is owned by Judith Williams.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tip for Dogs with Dry Skin

Here’s a tip for dogs with dry skin...bathe them less often, and make sure to brush their coat in an effort to rid the skin of dander. When you do bathe your pet, make sure to use a shampoo and rinse made for their special needs. Do not use a shampoo or conditioner made for people. If you would like some help picking out a dog safe shampoo and conditioner, please bring it to our attention at your next visit.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Book Club Selection!!!

Attention Book Club Participants! It's time to reveal January's Book Club selection! This month's selection is 'The Art of Racing in the Rain' by Garth Stein. Take this month to read the selection and check in with us on Monday, February 14 to discuss the themes and topics of the book and post your feedback. Enjoy!

Click here to view the site and learn more about the book.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year's Resolution

Does your New Year’s Resolution involve getting your pets behavior in check? We can provide advice regarding the correction of problems such as excessive barking, chewing, spraying, scratching, digging, house soiling and aggression. Make 2011 a great year for you and your pet!

Click below to view a pet behavior video from The Rachael Ray Show.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Heartworm Reminder

 Did you know that heartworm is a disease you can prevent your pet from having?  Heartworms are a constant threat to your animal, which is why our hospital recommends heartworm screening and prevention for your pet.  The most common signs of heartworm disease in cats are coughing, vomiting, breathing difficulties, weight loss and lethargy and are often mistaken for other conditions such as asthma, pneumonia and digestive problems. In fact, the most common clinical signs of heartworm disease in cats actually resemble bronchial asthma. The only way to know for sure is to have us examine and test your pet. This pre-emptive approach can spare your pet the pain of this often fatal disease.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Anti-freeze Dangers for Pets

Be mindful of dangerous chemicals normally used during the colder seasons, especially anti-freeze. Pets actually love the taste of anti-freeze and will sneak a taste any chance they get. Wipe spills or puddles and keep this poisonous liquid away from pets.  Even a teaspoon of anti-freeze can seriously harm your pet. Signs of anti-freeze poisoning include drowsiness, lethargy and depression. Keep pets safe as the weather gets colder this season.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Team Member of the Month

Pekin Veterinary Clinic is proud to honor Dr. Joel Jess as our Team Member of the Month for January. Dr. Jess acquired a love of animals by growing up on a cow-calf farm in western Iowa. Although, he enjoys all aspects of veterinary medicine, his areas of special interest include gastroenterology, soft tissue and ortho...pedic surgery, and canine rehabilitation. Dr. Joel Jess is a valued member of our team and we appreciate all of his contributions to the practice.